The article speaks about brilliant fast bowler Dale Steyn. He is the main spearhead of attack of South Africa. With 350 wickets in 69 test matches he is all equipped to break the record of Glenn Macgrath of 563 wickets in test matches, if he plays for the next 3 years.
In Test Matches, the batsman face the actual test. There are no limitations in respect of field restrictions like One Days. In that scenario Dale Steyn had emerged as the best fast bowler of the last 10 years. He had captured 350 wickets in only 69 tests.
If he manages to play another 3 years, he will break the record of Glenn Macgrath of capturing 563 wickets in test matches.
Many cricketers don’t consider the success of Dale Steyn due to the fact that South Africa as a test playing nation had not maintained the same standard as they had during the captainship of Hansie Cronje. Donald and Pollock with their combination created fear in the minds of a lot of batsmen in the late 1990s. Presently Steyn and Morkel are a formidable pair of fast bowlers, but due to flat pitches they are not that successful in India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
In comparison to the West Indian fast bowlers, Steyn is not that deadly like Malcolm Marshall, Michael Holding, Andy Roberts, Joel Garner, but they bowled in a combination of four.
Presently other than Dale Steyn there is no second bowler in South African having the class of Marshall or Garner. So pressure created by Steyn sometimes fall flat.
In the recent test series of South African against India, Dale Steyn single handedly defeated India in the second test. He captured 6 wickets in the first innings and 3 wickets in the second innings to live India reeling. All the batsmen including Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara failed to face the fiery pace.
In respect of pace, Dale Steyn had bowled mainly around 95 miles per hour. He does not bowl deliveries at the pace of Jeff Thomson who almost bowled at 100 miles per hour. But Steyn’s line and length is brilliant and in pitches where there is swing he is as deadly as any other bowler in the world.
Steyn had also played 79 one day internationals and captured 123 wickets in those matches. It had been the right decision of South African Cricket Control Board in not over taxing Steyn in playing too many one days.
In the recent Australia South Africa test series in 2014 it will be seen how Steyn fares against the Australian batsmen who are used to face fast pace of Mitchell Johnson. As one days are batsman friendly and too many matches had compelled fast bowlers to reduce pace, it is interesting to see whether Steyn can sustain in these conditions to play test matches for another 3 years. If he succeeds then there is no shadow of doubt that he will break the record of Glenn Macgrath. If he fails also he will be remembered as one of the greatest fast bowlers, same in the league of Malcolm Marshall, Denis Lillie, Richard Hadlee.
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In the recent years due to rules favouring batsmen spinners of the callibre of Muralidharan and Shane Warne are leading the wicket taker list in test matches. If fast bowlers of the stature of Dale Steyn can get 500 wickets new fast bowlers will be encouraged to bowl with pace and bounce.reply 0